NATURE FACILITATES CONNECTION WITH THE PROFOUND SELF: NEEDS, GOALS AND RESOURCE AWARENESS
The present study is based on Kaplan and Kaplan’s (1989) theory explaining the restorative effects that nature has on a
person’s psychic. According to this theory, nature exerts a “soft fascination” combining the activation of involuntary
attention mechanisms with the reflexive awareness, allowing a spontaneous detachment from stress factors and
automatic functioning, and also the feeling of compatibility between personal purposes, and the possibilities for action
offered by the environment (a sense of meaning). Our objective was to investigate the effects of nature on Self
awareness: the immediate, emotional experience; needs awareness and organization; plans for action, and availability
of resources, both personal, and external. We conducted an experiment with an experimental group (persons watching a
video with life in nature) and an active control group (involved in a psychotherapeutic technique focused on confronting
and solving personal difficulties by creative means, accompanied by a short psychological analysis). The effects were
assessed in terms of “here and now” emotions and available resources according to a self-evaluation scale, and with
open-ended questions regarding personal needs and goals. The results showed that, for the experimental group, the
relaxation effects and the awareness of long term goals were stronger, while all the other effects were the same as for
the control group. The results suggest that indeed, nature helps a person get in contact with her profound Self, allowing
the access to both “here and now” basic needs, and also long term goals (inner sources of meaning), the sense of
connection between internal tendencies, personal, and external resources, resulting in increased positive emotions, and
decreased negative emotions. Nature contemplation may facilitate a meditative state whit all its positive effects.
NATURE FACILITATES CONNECTION WITH THE PROFOUND SELF: NEEDS, GOALS AND RESOURCE AWARENESS.

CURRENT TRENDS IN NATURAL SCIENCES

Volum 3 | Număr 6 | Publicat la 01/12/2014 | Pagini:  37 - 41 | ISSN  2284-9521 | eISSN  2284-953X

Autori:
Nicoleta Răban-Motounu [1]
[1] University of Pitesti, Romania
Rezumat
The present study is based on Kaplan and Kaplan’s (1989) theory explaining the restorative effects that nature has on a
person’s psychic. According to this theory, nature exerts a “soft fascination” combining the activation of involuntary
attention mechanisms with the reflexive awareness, allowing a spontaneous detachment from stress factors and
automatic functioning, and also the feeling of compatibility between personal purposes, and the possibilities for action
offered by the environment (a sense of meaning). Our objective was to investigate the effects of nature on Self
awareness: the immediate, emotional experience; needs awareness and organization; plans for action, and availability
of resources, both personal, and external. We conducted an experiment with an experimental group (persons watching a
video with life in nature) and an active control group (involved in a psychotherapeutic technique focused on confronting
and solving personal difficulties by creative means, accompanied by a short psychological analysis). The effects were
assessed in terms of “here and now” emotions and available resources according to a self-evaluation scale, and with
open-ended questions regarding personal needs and goals. The results showed that, for the experimental group, the
relaxation effects and the awareness of long term goals were stronger, while all the other effects were the same as for
the control group. The results suggest that indeed, nature helps a person get in contact with her profound Self, allowing
the access to both “here and now” basic needs, and also long term goals (inner sources of meaning), the sense of
connection between internal tendencies, personal, and external resources, resulting in increased positive emotions, and
decreased negative emotions. Nature contemplation may facilitate a meditative state whit all its positive effects.
Cuvinte cheie:
natural environment, positive emotions, negative emotions, needs awareness, goal awareness



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